Sand dunes and grass with the ocean on the horizon and sun beams coming through the clouds

Ynys Môn/ Anglesey site visits with Natural Resources Wales

Aeronwy Williams

The PMP project will go on tour this Summer, exploring the beautifully diverse landscape of Ynys Môn / Anglesey with mapping festivals in Y Lle Llais / The Voice Place. This will be a great opportunity for children, young people and their families to get involved in an interactive, immersive experience whilst mapping experimental and engagement information making tangible data contributions for the PMP multi-layered map; working towards the Future Generations Act (2015).

Choosing these sites has been a carefully researched and intuitive process to hopefully give everyone the best experience whilst having an awareness of the cultural and social factors affecting the various areas and people of Anglesey.

On Friday the 22nd of March members of the PMP team congregated on Anglesey to embark on a whistle stop tour of sites managed by Natural Resources Wales (NRW). We hired a minibus from a local tour company Hidden Anglesey and were guided by Justin Hanson of NRW through the diverse landscape.

We visited a number of sites each with their own individuality, history and array of biodiversity. We were intrigued to learn about Anglesey’s three Fen sites Cors Goch, Cors Bodeillo and Cors Erddreiniog which are all Special Areas of Conservation (SACS). Dr Peter Jones MBE, Welsh peatland expert gave us some fascinating talks about the Fen sites, pointing out the rich biodiverse ecosystems which house some rare and indigenous species as well as highlighting their importance within the wider environment.

We climbed Yr Arwydd, the summit point in Mynydd Bodafon to gain an aerial perspective of the land and how the Fens were connected across the Island. The land here is rich in cultural heritage and a sacred place for Druids.

Our visit took us to Llyn Cefni and Nant Y Pandy / The Dingle in Llangefni, this area showed us the importance of connection with nature in more urbanised environments. This site is managed by Anglesey Council but a notable place to stop and explore on our journey, especially with our office base being located in the town centre within the Medrwn Môn offices.

Our site visits culminated in Niwbrwch / Newborough, we visited the local community venue PJ Institute which felt like travelling back in time. A museum of sorts with links to Newborough’s rich Welsh Cultural past. We then journeyed through the forest to the beach with some spectacular views of the Mountains on the mainland. We were immersed into the captivating details of the site learning it was made the first coastal National Nature Reserve in Wales in 1955 and has one of the largest and finest dune systems in Britain, with very special, notable geology.

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I experienced a deeper connection to the land during this trip, learning a lot of new facts about this special island and feeling immensely privileged to be from such a beautiful part of the world, Môn Mam Cymru.